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Brexit -- where are we now?

June 30, 2017 6:39 AM

EU flag with question mark

The House of Commons Library (an independent and impartial research service) publishes briefings on legislation and policy, from an impartial standpoint. They have produced "Brexit: an overview" to summarise where the UK is now in the Brexit process, stating that "[a]lthough there are a number of unknowns (such as whether notice to withdraw can be revoked) there is more clarity about the process of leaving the EU, the initial negotiating positions, and what 'no deal' would mean for the UK". The article covers (briefly):

  • the Article 50 process
  • where we are now
  • who the negotiators are
  • priorities
  • what the UK wants
  • EU "red lines"
  • scrutiny of negotiations
  • whether the UK could revoke its withdrawal notice
  • concluding a withdrawal agreement
  • the possibility of a separate "future relations" agreement
  • what "no deal" would mean
  • the financial settlement
  • which issues might form part of a withdrawal agreement, and which part of a future relations agreement
  • Gibraltar.

The article is a useful summary of the current state of play, highlighting the key issues for the United Kingdom at this point.

The Liberal Democrats, of course, remain committed to keeping the UK as close as possible to the EU. To quote the Lib Dems' national website:

"Liberal Democrats are open and outward-looking. We passionately believe that Britain's relationship with its neighbours is stronger as part of the European Union. Whatever its imperfections, the EU remains the best framework for working effectively and co-operating in the pursuit of our shared aims. It has led directly to greater prosperity, increased trade, investment and jobs, better security, and a greener environment. Britain is better off in the EU.

"Liberal Democrats campaigned for the UK to remain in the EU. However, we acknowledge the result of the 2016 referendum, which gave the Government a mandate to start negotiations to leave. The decision Britain took, though, was simply whether to remain in or to leave the European Union. There was no option on the ballot paper to choose the shape of our future relationship with the EU on vital issues including trade, travel or security."

and:

"We continue to believe that there is no deal as good for the UK outside the EU as the one it already has as a member."

 

Sources:

https://secondreading.uk/brexit/brexit-an-overview/ [accessed 29 June 2017]

http://www.libdems.org.uk/europe [accessed 29 June 2017]